Ah, ghosting. It's the dating phenomenon that happens when people are too cowardly to actually end things with the people they've been seeing, so they choose to just… disappear instead.
Ghosters are idiots. But if you've ever been ghosted, know that you're not alone.
In this weekly column, I share a tale of a time a reader was ghosted (with accompanying screenshots) so you can see the last text that was sent or words that were uttered before someone decided to disappear forever. I present to you: Boom, Ghosted.
This week's "Boom, Ghosted" is a little different from the rest. Anna* wasn't ghosted by some guy she matched with on Tinder or some guy she'd been hooking up with for a few weeks or even her boyfriend. No, Anna was ghosted by her best friend. As someone with some very close guy friends, this one really struck a cord with me. Read the story from Anna's point of view and see how you feel about it yourselves.
This guy and I were best friends (since like 2009). There were a couple (like, less than five) times over three years that we had a couple drunken hookups, but it was always when we were both basically blackout drunk and it never caused any awkwardness when we were sober. By 2012 we were the only people we knew still in our college town, so we figured "let's move in together." It was literally the best living situation -- we were never home at the same time and we never had any drunken mistakes after we moved in together. We both moved back to our hometowns last year (20 minutes apart) and still hung out probably once every two weeks or so. He started dating his now-fiancé in January and hanging out dropped to one time in six months. Don't get me wrong, I expected not to hang out with him as much, I'm not trying to compete with someone who finally put up with him. In fact, everything he told me made me really excited to meet her. But every time I suggested something to do so we could hang out and meet her, he'd say no. A couple weeks ago, he said he was finally ready to introduce us. He set up a time for dinner, then ended up cancelling three times in two weeks -- this is what he sent me the last time:
So, we didn't end up hanging out that night and then two days later he threw a surprise engagement party where he invited all of our friends (except me) and he proposed to her that night in front of everyone. I texted him congratulations. At that point, I figured she had a problem with him having any female friends. I pretty much realized our friendship as I knew it was over, and I would be slowly relegated to seeing each other only at big gatherings. I deleted his number so I wouldn't be tempted to initiate any contact with him, even if it was just the occasional dad joke or Taylor Swift gif. So, imagine my shock when I got this text, just three days later.
All he had to do was let the friendship slowly drift away like it was already doing, but instead he did this. Things were never awkward between us, he had plenty of girlfriends while we were actually living together that I was friends with. We didn't snap all the time, didn't text all that much, so this came out of nowhere. My assumption is that he told her at some point that there were a couple drunken hookups in our past and once she had the ring, she had the leverage to nix the entire friendship.
Anna never heard from this guy, the guy who used to be her best friend, again. And it really bums me out. I, personally, don't see why being in a relationship necessarily has to cancel out your friendships with other people of the opposite sex. But it seems to happen all the time.
But I know this isn't as clear cut as our usual ghosting type situation. Would any of you be uncomfortable with your significant other maintaining his/her relationship with a friend they've hooked up with in the past? How about the way he handled it? Do you think he could have done it better? The "please don't respond" is what really got me. Like he dumped her out of the blue then didn't even give her a chance to talk it out with him? Brutal.
I'm really curious to hear what you guys think. Comment them here and let me know. As always, if you have your own story about being ghosted, feel free to message them to me here.
* Name has been changed.